A patient has revealed the hilarious flow chart his doctor uses to test whether people are suffering from flu or a common cold.
John Richards, a radio DJ from Seattle, posted the ‘My Flu Algorithm’ on Twitter, which asks readers if they feel they have been hit by a train.
If the answer is no, the ‘flu info from a literal doctor’ states they do not have the viral infection.
Responding yes without being involved in such a deadly accident, confirms a flu diagnosis.
In response to the post, which has been liked more than 9,500 times, other Twitter users share their ingenious ways of separating a common cold from flu, including whether you could get out off the sofa for £100.
This year’s H3N2 strain, also known as ‘Aussie flu’ has killed hundreds of Americans to date, including at least 50 adults in Dallas alone and more than 53 children nationwide.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), this flu season is on track to becoming one of the worst in recent history.
In the UK, the flu outbreak, which is thought to be the worst in seven years, has reached a death toll of at least 231, however, officials claim the epidemic is ‘stabilizing’.
Other flu ‘diagnosis’ methods
After sharing the ‘algorithm’ on January 29, the post, which has been retweeted more than 4,700 times, has inspired hundreds of responses.
One was told she had ‘the proper job’ after a doctor found her drenched in sweat and drifting in and out of consciousness.
Another recalled how she spent a week in a ‘fog’ and accidentally left her son at school after suffering a fever due to a flu infection.
A college professor even added how he suspected one of his students was suffering when they likened themselves to a ‘burning landfill site’.
Flu stabilizing in the UK
Last Friday, Dr. Dan Jernigan, director of the CDC’s Influenza Division, said the flu epidemic in the US is unusual as health officials expected activity to have already reached its peak, yet it continues to get worse.
In the UK, at least 193 deaths have been recorded in England, 26 are known to have died in Scotland and 12 in Northern Ireland. No precise data exists for Wales.
Yet, as of last week, the number of people reporting flu-like symptoms fell for the first time this winter; halving in seven days.
How can flu be deadly?
Flu often leaves sufferers feeling nauseous, and riddled with a constant cough and runny nose.
Yet, in extreme cases, it can be life-threatening.
Flu poses the biggest risks to the elderly, young children, pregnant women and those with a compromised immune system, such as people undergoing chemotherapy.
The infection can lead to pneumonia and trigger sepsis, which arises when the body’s immune response to an infection causes injury to its own tissues and organs.
The Aussie flu strain is considered notoriously difficult to combat, with doctors advising people reduce their risk of infection by being aware of the symptoms, such as muscle weakness, as well as maintaining good hygiene and being vaccinated.
If you know someone who might like this, please click “Share!”